Author Archive

Dayton Moore’s “Process” Revealed

There have been many attempts in the past to understand the method behind Dayton Moore’s madness* – including undercover ninja raids of the Royals front office, and speculations that he was engaged in a duel to the death with Omar Minaya  - but to this day no one has yet succeeded. His so called “Process” remains as mysterious today as the first day he told fans to trust in it, making it the great unsolved mystery of our time. Amelia Earhart’s got nothing on Moore.

And yet….we’ve finally found it. Unearthed by the NotGraphs Investigative Reporting Investigation Team, we’ve discovered the Holy Grail:

A Jump to Conclusions mat – of course! I can just imagine Moore now, standing in the middle of his office and asking aloud, “Should I trade Grienke or not?” He closes his eyes, says a quick prayer for good luck, and jumps into the unknown. “Got an offer? Take it.” As Moore moves to the phone to call the Brewers back, he inadvertently steps on the mat one more time. With the receiver in his hand, he looks down at his feet only to see the words, “Why Not Yuni?”

*Is it just me, or does it feel passé to make fun of Moore these days? It was all the rage last year, but the level of snark has lessened recently and I feel behind the times in writing this post. But if we can’t make fun of Moore, what General Manager can we make fun of? Now that Minaya is gone, is there anyone else out there near his level of craziness?


The “Food Metaphors” Tag Is Resurrected


Behold, the wild nerd!

Legend tells that back in the heady, wild days of The Internet, there once existed a blog so full of wit, snark, and sabermetric wisdom, mainstream sports writers quaked in their slippers at its very mention. Run by the titans Ken Tremendous, Dak, and Junior, this website – FireJoeMorgan.com – was a shining beacon of hope for all the saber-geeks hiding away in their parents’ basements. One day, their day would come! One day, sabermetrics would be accepted! One day, sportswriters would stop writing crap! And until that day came, at least our laughs could hide our tears.

Although Fire Joe Morgan has since passed into the realms of memory, its legacy lives on everywhere sports fans mix humor, advanced stats, and copious amounts of snark. As NotGraphs is an alternative baseball blog that likes to dabble in all three of these areas, it’s only fitting that we pay homage to The Greats that have come before us. And so, I am proud to announce that NotGraphs is officially reintroducing the famed “Food Metaphors” post tag.

Yes, that’s right – food metaphors, the one thing Ken, Dak, and Junior say they miss the most from Fire Joe Morgan. Sportswriters have many funny habits, but one of the weirdest is their odd obsession with food metaphors. “He threw the high cheese right by him.” “He really put some mustard on that pitch.” These metaphors pepper our discussions about baseball, and certain baseball writers are drawn to them like cherry pie.

Read the rest of this entry »


The Blade Is Back: Adventures in Bad Sequels

Coming soon to a minor league park near you!

Replacement level players are, by definition, valueless. They are available in massive quantities, so cheap as to be practically free, and so bad that they can be easily replaced by picking a random player out of a hat – in short, they’re the baseball equivalent of a Twinkie. They may look and smell like baseball players, but you’d much prefer to have your 2 TAR (Twinkies Above Replacement) Ho Ho if you hadn’t dropped it on the floor.

But despite this, replacement level players do have an important role in major league baseball. No, it’s not that they’re necessary organization fillers: it’s that they’re some of the most entertaining, likable goofs this side of Bertie Wooster. I don’t know what it is – the interminable bus rides, the copious amounts of junk food, the prolonged exposure to minor league mascots - but something has a way of making them a bit….odd. Just look at what’s happened to career minor-leaguer Dirk Hayhurst. He’s progressed to the point where he must paint himself with polka dots before every game, and he won’t trot to the mound without his antlers in place.

And that’s why despite the overwhelming un-reception that Casey Fossum’s signing received from most Mets blogs, I want to come out and applaud the Mets for this signing. Yes, Casey Fossum stinks. Yes, he has long since left his heady days of youth and effectiveness behind him. Yes, he posted a 5.72 ERA in Japan last season and got demoted to their version of the minor leagues. BUT, Fossum dominates the league in three key areas: nickname, novelty pitch ability, and pitch face.

Nickname: According to his Baseball-Reference page, Fossum’s nickname is “The Blade”. Its etymology has been lost to the depths of time, but I’m sure it’s referring to his chiseled, badass 160 lb. frame.

Novelty Pitch: It’s not every day that you stumble upon a pitcher that throws a 50 MPH eephus pitch, let alone one that calls this pitch a “Fossum Flip”.

Pitch Face: I don’t know how Fossum’s face and body can contort into such shapes, but it’s truly a thing of beauty.

So Mets fans out there, don’t despair. Even if Casey Fossum reaches your major league club and loses you every game he pitches in, he’s still a more likable player than Oliver Perez and Francisco Rodriguez combined, right?

You’ll die as you lived
In a flash of The Blade
In a corner forgotten by no-one
You lived for the touch
For the feel of the ball
One man, and his Eephus.

- The Casey Fossum Anthem, also known as “Flash of the Blade” by Iron Maiden.